Clare Bluebell Survey
Help us to record the Bluebells in Clare
Bluebells are a common woodland Spring flower in Ireland. They are
easily recognizable by the spike of blue bell shaped flowers, which
is where they get their name. Bluebells die down following flowering
and store their energy in a bulb ready to grow again the following
spring. The Bluebell flowers when there is light available in woodlands,
before the trees fully develop their leaves.
have long narrow leaves, about 25-45cm long and about 7-15mm wide. They
normally have blue bell shaped flowers although they can be occasionally
white or pink.
to look for Bluebells
Bluebells can usually be seen flowering between April and June. They are
normally most abundant and spectacular in May.
to look for Bluebells
Bluebells are mainly found in shady habitats such as woodland, scrub or
hedgerows. They can also be found in habitats such as heaths and grassy
banks, where there were bushes or trees. They are quite common in Clare,
however according to official records they are rare in South West Clare.
Bluebells are usually associated with broadleaf woodland, ancient broadleaf
woodland is one of the rarest habitats in County Clare and nationwide.
you are looking at Bluebells please do not trample on them too much and
PLEASE DO NOT PICK them. Leave them for other people
to enjoy and allow them to flower for several more years to come.
is threatening Bluebells?
The main threat to Bluebells is the destruction of their habitat.
The removal of habitats such as hedgerows, scrub and woodland often
leads to a loss of the Bluebells.
and Britain are home to a very significant proportion of the Bluebell
population in Europe.
are we carrying out this survey?
There are records of bluebells in County Clare, however we do not know
all the locations where they occur. All information on the distribution
of species in Clare is important. If we do not know where species are,
it is difficult to know how they should be conserved. This survey will
produce a distribution map of Bluebells in County Clare, which will show
where people can find and enjoy them.
Other surveys of different
plants and animals will take place throughout Clare over the next few
Bluebell survey is part of the Local Biodiversity Action Plan process
in county Clare. Each Local Authority is required to produce a Local Biodiversity
Action Plan according to the National Biodiversity Plan. Biodiversity
is the variety of all life. Biodiversity includes everything from microscopic
insects to the largest whale, from tiny algae to huge ancient trees.
The production of a Local Biodiversity Action Plan in Clare is one of
the objectives of the County Clare Heritage Plan published in 2003.
More information on Bluebells and other plants is available in books and
magazines (many of which are available in your local library) such as:
- Spot the 101 Habitats
and Species in Clare: Biodiversity in Clare by Clare County Council
- Flowers of Britain and Ireland, Collins Wild Guide
- Pocket Guide to Irish Wild Flowers by Ross and Ruth
- Wild Flowers of Britain and Ireland by Blamey, Fitter and Fitter